Production Blogs

Advice for future producers

Sharing a few tips for future producers from someone with no prior news production experience!

A photo of Thursday's See It Live team.

Before my first shift as an ATVN producer, I had no experience with iNews, the software used for creating newscasts. No matter how much I prepared and received training in the media center beforehand, my nerves were through the roof. As a graduate student in a one-year program, I felt at a disadvantage in a class filled with undergrads who had previously worked in the media center in some capacity. Little did I know that I would learn so much from them and build an unbreakable bond. Professor Stacy Scholder also constantly reminded us of our strengths and empowered us to grow.

Coming to the production class with no prior experience, I hope the following three tips are helpful on your journey as a news producer.

The first piece of advice is to have confidence in yourself. I recommend starting the day early, eating breakfast, and repeating positive affirmations. We can be our own worst critics, but reminding ourselves of our strengths under challenging moments truly makes a difference.

The second tip is time management. It’s critical to schedule a recurring meeting with your co-producers and executive producer a day before to flesh out ideas, concepts, or questions. Complete all of your story pitches the night prior so that you aren’t pressed for time. A good night’s rest is also vital as shifts can run between 8 and 10 hours. It’s important to set aside time to review notes and prepare for classes. Making it on time to pitch meetings is vital.

Lastly, have fun! It’s easy to get consumed by the work, diligence, and responsibilities of being a producer, but with a solid team backing you up, there’s enjoyment in the adventure. Working with a diverse group of students is a thrilling and empowering experience. The semester zooms by quickly, so cherish every moment and appreciate your team - they will save you many, many times!

Hopefully, these three bits of advice will help you as you begin your journey as a producer. I not only learned how to be proficient on iNews, but I also learned how to create a rundown, add value to my stories, and build a bond with the best Thursday team ever.

This story was written as an assignment in JOUR403: Television News Production with Professor Stacy Scholder. Annenberg Media student editors also reviewed the story and published it per newsroom guidelines.